Devastating shallow quake
Five months after a magnitude 7.1 earthquake, centred near Darfield southwest of Christchurch, an even more damaging quake struck on 22 February 2011. That shallow, 6.3 magnitude quake, in the Port Hills just 10 kilometres from the centre of Christchurch, caused the greatest ground acceleration ever recorded in New Zealand.
The earthquake claimed the lives of 185 people and injured many more. The quake sequence also caused significant psychological impact as people endured more than 11,000 aftershocks, while dealing with lost and damaged homes, disrupted communities and work places.
About 25,000 houses suffered serious damage and more than half of all buildings in the central city had to be demolished.